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This Week in Palestine, January 3rd, 2014
Welcome to this Week in Palestine, a service of the International Middle East Media Center, http://www.imemc.org, for December 28th 2013 to January 3rd, 2014.
During his tenth visit to the region this week U.S Secretary of State, John Kerry expressed optimism for peace-making, meanwhile Israeli troops shot and killed two Palestinians this week. These stories and more, coming up, stay tuned.
The Nonviolence Report
Let’s begin our weekly report as usual with the nonviolent activities organized in the West Bank. on Friday Israeli soldiers attacked the nonviolent protests organized in West Bank village using tear gas and rubber-coated steel bullets. IMEMC’s Eman Abedraboo-Bannoura with the details:
Protests were organized on Friday in the village of Kufer Qadoum in northern West Bank, the villages of al Nabi Saleh, Bil’in, Nil’in, central West Bank, and Al Ma’ssara village in southern west Bank.
One local youth was kidnapped and many others suffered effects of tear gas inhalation when troops attacked the weekly anti wall and settlements protest at the village of Kufer Qadoum.
Earlier in the week an old man, from the village of Kufur Qaddoum, was pronounced dead on Thursday at dawn due to tear gas inhalation. soldiers attacked the village and fired tear gas into residents homes killing the old man.
Elsewhere on Friday, Israeli soldiers used tear gas and sound bombs as well as chemical water to attack the weekly anti wall and settlements protests at villages of Bil’in and Ni’lin, and the nearby al Nabi Saleh.
In Bil’in and Ni’lin, Israeli soldiers attacked the protesters as soon as they reached the gate of the wall that separates local farmers from their lands. Many were treated for the effects of tear gas inhalation.
Many residents were also treated for the effects of tear gas inhalation at the village of al Nabi Saleh. Troops attacked the unarmed protesters before even leaving the village. Later soldiers stormed the village and fired tear gas into residents’ homes causing damage.
Meanwhile Israeli troops attacked the villagers of at al Ma’ssara and their supporters at village entrance then forced them back using rifle buts and batons to push people back, no injuries were reported.
For IMEMC News this is Eman Abedraboo-Bannoura.
The Political Report
This week, U.S Secretary of State, Jhon Kerry expressed optimism for peace-making as he is visiting the region for meetings between Israeli and Palestinian leaders. IMEMC’s Rami Al Meghari has more:
US Secretary of State, Jhon Kerry, has recently begun a new series of meetings between Israelis and Palestinians, in an effort to bridge the gap between the two sides, ahead of a peace deal before September 2014.
During a joint press conference with Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, in Jerusalem, Kerry said that peace is possible, despite the fact of skepticism by both sides. He noted that there have been difficulties yet they can be sorted out by means of continued mediation.
In the meantime, Netanyahu, cast doubts over Palestinians' willingness towards peace. He was referring to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas's remarks , in which the latter described recently-freed Palestinian prisoners, as heroes.
This week, Israel released 26 Palestinians from Israeli jails within a framework agreement ,brokered in June 2013, by United States. The agreement kicked off stalled Palestinian-Israeli peace process.
On a related note, Palestinian President signaled possibility of heading for United Nations to ensure halt of Israeli settlements building , underway on occupied Palestinian lands, mainly in East Jerusalem.
Abbas's remarks came after Israel rejected a US proposal that US forces maintain a presence in the Jordan Valley, in case the parties reach a peaceful agreement by September, 2014, deadline for current negotiations.
Israeli Interior Minister, Gideon Saa'r, toured the Jordan Valley this week along with a number of Israeli lawmakers. The Israeli minister voiced out rejection to the proposal , saying, no-presence of Israeli army would mean spread of terrorism.
Jordan Valley lies in the West Bank, which United Nations recognize as borders of the occupied Palestinian territories, as well as future Palestinian state.
For IMEMC News, I am Rami Almeghari in Gaza
The West Bank and Gaza Report
This week the Israeli army conducted at least 53 military incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank and Gaza. During these attacks, Israeli troops killed two men and kidnapped at least 40 Palestinian civilians. IMEMC’s George Rishmawi reports:
Israeli military invasions this week were mainly in the cities of Jenin, northern West Bank, Hebron and Bethlehem in the south as well as in occupied Jerusalem.
In the village of Kufur Qaddoum, in northern West Bank, an 85-year old man, was pronounced dead on Thursday at dawn due to suffocation from tear gas inhalation.
Sa’id Jasser Ali, suffered serious complications after Israeli soldiers fired dozens of gas bombs at a number of homes in the village.
Local sources said that soldiers attacked the villagers as dozens of Palestinians held a nonviolent procession marking the 49th anniversary of the establishment of the Fatah movement, currently the ruling party of President Abbas’ government.
Earlier in the week, a Palestinian minor was shot and injured by Israeli forces, in Aida refugee camp, near Bethlehem.
According to security sources, live bullets were fired towards Palestinian minors in the camp, hitting a 14-year-old in the foot. He was transferred to the hospital, for treatment, and his wounds were described as moderate.
Another Palestinian teenager was injured on Wednesday when Israeli settlers assaulted him with clubs in the village of Ya’abad near the northern West Bank city of Jenin.
In the Gaza strip this week, Palestinian Medical sources reported that a Palestinian teen has died of wounds suffered Thursday, after Israeli soldiers opened fire in the northern part of the Gaza Strip.
Adnan Abu Khater, 17 years of age, was seriously injured east of Jabalia town, and was moved to Ash-Shifa Medical Center, where he underwent a surgery. He remained in serious condition, and was pronounced dead on Friday.
Earlier in the week, a Palestinian official has said, that two Palestinians were injured when several Israeli artillery shells were fired at the central Gaza Strip on Sunday night and Monday at dawn.
According to Gaza's Ministry of Health, Israeli artillery shells hit an area east of al-Maghazi refugee camp causing the injuries.
For IMEMC news this is George Rishmawi.
And that’s all for today from This Week in Palestine. This was the Weekly report for December 28th 2013 to January 03rd, 2014 from the Occupied Palestinian Territories. For more news and updates please visit our website at http://www.imemc.org. This week’s report has been brought to you by Samer Jaber and me Ghassan Bannoura.